Spring top 12: Tony Jones

Only one other player in Colorado history carried the ball more times in one season than Rodney Stewart's 290 carries last season. Stewart isn't likely to be asked to handle that kind of workload in 2011, especially with a capable playmaker like redshirt freshman Tony Jones waiting in the wings. Jones is No. 6 on our list of the best Buffs of spring football.

Tony Jones rushed 36 times for 189 yards and two touchdowns in the three main spring scrimmages, averaging an impressive 5.3 yards per carry.

Jones was routinely one of the players mentioned by coach Jon Embree in post-practice interviews any time he was asked about players who had caught his eye.

Jones is similar to Stewart in size but seems to be less of a jitterbug usually hitting the hole hard.

Jones came to Colorado from the national champion high school team at Don Bosco in New Jersey where he accumulated more than 1,600 total yards of offense and scored 35 touchdowns. He was the Gatorade Player of the Year in New Jersey as a senior.

Despite that resume, Jones said he believes it served him well being able to sit out a season, learn and work on building his body in 2010.

"You just work hard and one days it's going to be your turn," Jones said. "You can't rush it because when you rush it, you're not going to play well. So just taking that year off, I wanted to get in the weight room and get stronger and faster. Now it's a fresh start for everybody."

To earn playing time this fall, Jones simply needs to perform consistently while improving his pass protection ability and his pass catching out of the back field. Stewart caught 12 passes in the scrimmages this spring while Jones caught just two passes.

Want to read past editions of the Spring top 12?

Daniel Munyer

Josh Hartigan

Nick Hirschman

Kyle Slavin

Paul Richardson

Jack Harris

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